Pushin' It 2 the Limit - Pushin' It 2 the Limit (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Pushin' It 2 the Limit

Pushin' It 2 the Limit (2014)

Self Released

Pushin’ It 2 the Limit is the new band featuring Audrey Crash and Leta Gray of Ex Friends as well as drummer Mike Zwick. Basing their sound around a propulsive, hard-charging beat, the band has several obvious influences. But, by pulling so strongly, and so selectively, from various sources, the band creates an identity that pays homage to the classic riffers, but stands on its own.

Obviously, the Ramones play a heavy part in this music, either by direction or osmosis. The songs blast forward at double speed, Zwick’s Marky Ramone attack throwing the band forward while Crash’s bass constantly buzzes. But even here, as the band merges together, they begin to mesh together their selected strands. Gray’s guitar is equal parts Billy Karren and Bobby Steele. At times, its high pitched and noodly, so that her riffs trickle down across Crash and Zwick’s mass. But, then, at other times, she slams the pick down to create lumbering, dark tones that show shades of the Misfits. That is, her style bears both a darkness and a love for classic rock combined.

But, while these tunes charge along, there’s more than just classic punk here. Both Crash and Gray handle vocals, sometimes together and sometimes separately, creating a sound that swings between the cold tone of college rock and the hotter delivery of the earlier punkers. Because the band switches between the styles so often, and with such skill, it’s clear they’ve mastered their tools and know exactly what they’ve trying to build. And then, they built it with ease, to boot.

But, what really makes this release a blast is how much fun the band seems to be having. For one, there’s a real zest in the performance. “Vertical Horizon” ends with a classic, surf rock solo. The fractured duet singing heard in “That’s All Murder She Wrote” shows that the band is more interested in berserk energy than perfection, and really, that sort of makes it perfect. Also, every song opens with a battle cry, which is awesome. “Pump Up the Shred” is a great kick off scream. Also, I think there might be a song about saving fish from hungry cats?

This release is a blast. High energy tunes that flick back and forth between disparate styles every bar, which, quite surprisingly, makes everything work in tandem. To get the full effect, you have to really see them live and see their team uniforms that they wear on stage. But, as far as first releases go, this album doesn’t only show promise, it shows completion of clever ideas. It shreds, man.